Tuesday, October 23, 2007

OU Educates Congress on Indivisbility of Jerusalem

OU Educates Congress on Indivisbility of Jerusalem
October 23, 2007


The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation's largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, is delivering educational materials to every Member of Congress regarding the centrality of Jerusalem in the religion and history of the Jewish people.

The effort, organized by the Union's Institute for Public Affairs, is a component of the Union's campaign in the wake of public statements by American, Israeli and Palestinian officials calling into question the fate of Jerusalem as the eternal and indivisible capital of the Jewish People, in advance of a meeting of these parties being planned for Annapolis.

The distribution of the materials is particularly being done to coincide with the Wednesday appearance of Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice before the House Foreign Affairs Committee.

Under a cover memo entitled: "Jerusalem: Keep it One, Keep it Safe", the Union is distributing copies of the book - "Jerusalem, Eye of the Universe" - authored by the eminent scholar Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan. The distributed materials also contain a copy of the provision of Public Law 104-45, enacted in 1995 which contains the following:
"Statement of the Policy of the United States. (1) Jerusalem should remain an undivided city in which the rights of every ethnic and religious group are protected. (2) Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of the State of Israel."

Union public policy director Nathan Diament stated:

With political leaders stating or implying that Jerusalem might be redivided for the sake of a 'peace process,' we must remind them of basic principles. The holy city of Jerusalem has been central to the spirituality and destiny of Jews for millennia. Forty years ago, Jerusalem was rescued from languishing as a divided city. During the period of 1948-1967, when the city was under Arab jurisdiction, Jews and Christians were barred from their holiest sites. Many holy sites were damaged or destroyed. Western Jerusalem was subjected to daily sniper fire. The duly enacted policy of the United States of America is the recognition that the holy city of Jerusalem as the indivisible capital of the State of Israel. We will be reminding our friends on Capitol Hill of these basic truths with the materials we are delivering this week and we pray this will empower and enable them to help us protect Jerusalem from being torn asunder again for the sake of an ephemeral 'peace process'.

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